MAIN TOUR : The 'CLASSIC' Philippines Bird Tour.

March 2025 to April 2025
Exact dates: 
16/03/2025 to 06/04/2025
per person 6 to 7 PAX $4,600 (twin-share) single room supplement $450


  • (22 days, maximum 7 people)
  • This tour covers the 3 main islands: Luzon plus Southern Sierra Madre, Mindanao & Palawan.


  • Day 1 Arrival and overnight in Manila.
  • Day 2 Early morning departure from Manila with birding at Candaba Marsh on route to Banaue for overnight stay.

Birding around the marshes at Candaba gives us the best chance of finding Philippine Duck, Philippine Swamphen, Eastern Grass-Owl, Cinnamon Bittern and Oriental Pratincole.

  • Day 3 and 4 Birding 2 full days at Mt.Polis

The famous rice terraces at Banaue will be the base from where we shall explore the mountains of the Central Cordillera. Our first morning we shall bird the mossy montane forest at Mount Polis for Luzon Scops-owl at pre-dawn. Our main endemics are Flame-breasted Fruit-Dove, Luzon Racket-tail, Green-backed Whistler, Philippine and Long-tailed Bush-Warbler, Chestnut-faced Babbler, Flame-crowned Flowerpecker, Metallic-winged Sunbird and White-cheeked Bullfinch. We will also be on the lookout for the little known Whitehead’s Swiftlet and the very rare Luzon Jungle-Flycatcher. We will further be exploring the river next to the village of Bay-yo where we will spot Luzon Water-redstart and perhaps Benguet Bush-Warbler in the surrounding scrub. We  have two full days to explore these higher and cool mountains of Central Luzon.

  • Day 5 Morning departure from Banaue to Subic Bay – afternoon birding Subic Bay.
  • Day 6 Full day at Subic Bay

Subic Bay is one of the very last remaining lowland forests on Luzon within an old American Naval Base. This splendid site holds about 140 bird species. We shall explore these extensive lowland forests along roads and a few trails. It gives us an excellent opportunity to look out for White-fronted Tit and Green Racquet-tail, two birds that are hard to find elsewhere. We shall also keep an eye open for White-lored Oriole. Most of the time we will be birding along good roads looking out for Philippine Green-Pigeon, Blue-naped Parrot, Rufous Coucal, Blackish Cuckoo-shrike, Northern Sooty Woodpecker, Luzon Flameback, Stripe-headed Rhabdornis and Trilling Tailorbird. Subic also gives us the chance for some excellent nightbirds like Philippine Scops-Owl, Luzon Hawk-Owl or even the Chocolate Boobook. And with some luck the mighty Philippine Eagle-Owl may show. So plenty of birds to look out for!.

  • Day 7 Morning departure from Subic Bay - birding at La Mesa Eco Park  –  drive to Tanay for visit to Palo Alto- for overnight stay at La View Infanta Road. (La Mesa Eco Park closed to public unlit futher notice)

We will spend a whole morning birding at the La Mesa Eco Park, a bird heaven in the heart of Quezon City in Manila. It has become the best site to see the Ashy Thrush as it has at least few territories within the Park. Arriving early in the morning gives the best chance to see the thrushes. Aside from the thrushes, the Park also holds Hooded Pitta. These would be the main targets for birding in the Park. Other target species include the Lowland White-eyes, which are very commonly seen. The La Mesa Eco Park is also a great spot for migrating and wintering birds and the list is still growing. Some migrants that have been recorded in the park include Scaly Ground Thrush and Pechora Pipit. The park also holds more bird species including Slaty-legged Crake, Plain Bush-hen, Philippine Coucal. The Indigo-banded Kingfisher and the  Collared Kingfisher are very common. Philippine Pygmy Woodpeckers are commonly heard and seen as well as White-breasted Wood-swallow , Philippine Pied Fantail. The Philippine Magpie-Robin and Grey-backed Tailorbird are also targets that can be seen here, as well as the Mangrove (Philippine) Flycatcher. There are so many possibilities for a nice morning birding at La Mesa Eco Park in Quezon City.

  • Day 8 All day birding at the Infanta road. Southern Sierra Madre Mountains. 

We will be looking for one of our main target birds of the tour, the Whiskered Pitta. We stand a good chance to see this stunning Pitta species. Bicol Ground Warbler, Northern Rufous Hornbill, Cream-bellied Fruit and Flame-breasted fruit Dove we also have the chance to see the rare Grand Rhabdornis and Black-crowned Babbler. We stand another chance for the Luzon Scops-owl  

  • Day 9 After some early morning birding at the Infanta Road we will drive to Los Banos for some afternoon birding at the campus.
  • Day 10 Full day day at Mt.Makiling 

The university campus grounds of Los Banos at the base of the well-forested Mount Makiling. Here we shall try pre-dawn for Philippine Scops-Owl and Luzon Hawk-Owl. And at dawn the Spotted Wood-Kingfisher will give its calls. As we slowly make our way up the mountain we will be looking out for Scale-feathered Malkoha, Red-crested Malkoha, Luzon Hornbill, Philippine Trogon, White-browed Shama and, if we are lucky enough, Luzon Bleeding-heart. At the campus ground we will be searching for the Indigo-banded Kingfisher along the stream and check the trees for Lowland White-eye. We will keep our eyes open for Spotted and Barred Buttonquail in the surrounding grasslands.

  • Day 11 Early morning flight to Davao and transfer to Mt.Kitanglad with birding in the afternoon.
  • Day 12 and 13 Birding two full days at Mt. Kitanglad. 

Mt. Kitanglad is one of the most popular birding destinations in the Philippines and is well known as the best site for the Philippine Eagle, probably the main target bird for anyone visiting the Philippines. Here we have an excellent opportunity to encounter the eagle which is one of the biggest raptors in the World. With the help of our local guide we shall explore the mountain forest over the next few days. The mountain holds most of the Mindanao montane endemics. The area around our camp gives the best chance of finding Hombron's Kingfisher in the early morning. In the surrounding forest we should find Black-and cinnamon Fantail, Yellow-bellied Whistler, Sulphur-billed Nuthatch, Stripe-breasted Rhabdornis, Grey-hooded Sunbird and Red-eared Parrotfinch. As we make our way to the higher levels we will be looking out for McGregor’s Cuckoo-Shrike, White-cheeked Bullfinch, Apo Myna, Apo Sunbird, Mountain Shrike and Mindanao White-eye. At night we have a good chance to find Philippine Frogmouth and we may spot the Giant Scops-Owl. At dusk and dawn we will be looking out for the Bukidnon Woodcock and Philippine Nightjar. 

  • Day 14 Early morning departure from Mt.Kitanglad followed by a drive to Bislig for overnight stay (travel day)
  • Day 15,16 and 17 Birding  three full days at the P.I.C.O.P forest.

This once vast area of lowland forest within the former  P.I.C.O.P Concession has now largely been reduced to small patches of forest. The area has the biggest list of endangered Philippine endemics. We shall therefore concentrate on some of the really hard and endangered species that still survive in these forest patches. Celestial Monarch and Short-crested Monarch are our main target birds here as both are very hard to find elsewhere in our selection of bird destinations. Among the many other species that this area holds are Writhed Hornbill, Rufous Hornbill, Steere’s Honey Buzzard, Pinsker’s Hawk Eagle, Southern Silvery Kingfisher, rufous-lored(Winchell's) Kingfisher, Mindanao Wattled Broadbill, Azure-breasted Pitta, Black-headed Tailorbird and Philippine Oriole just to name a few. Mindanao Hawk-Owl and Everett's Scops-Owl will be our night target birds. We also have the chance to look for Eastern Grass-Owl and Philippine Duck at the old Bislig airport. 

  • Day 18 Early morning drive to Davao. Flight to Manila then connecting flight to Puerto Princesa, Palawan for overnight stay . (travel day with two domestic flights)
  • Day 19 Early morning Balsahan Trail - mangrove visit -  then birding along the beach at Puerto Princesa – afternoon Mantanani Scops-owl search.

We will set off very early in the morning to reach the Balsahan Trail within the grounds of the Iwahig Penal Farm. This trail leads us through some patches of bamboo before it leads to nice patches of lowland forest. We will concentrate on finding the two specialties of the area: Melodious Babbler and Palawan Flycatcher. The area also holds many species that we can find at our next destination:Subterranean River National Park. We will go out looking for Chinese Egrets and waders on the beach near Puerto Princesa. In the afternoon we will take a short boat ride to a small island where we will search for the near-endemic Mantanani Scops-owl.

  • Day 20 Morning and afternoon birding on route to Sabang Beach.
  • Day 21 Birding in the early morning at Subterranean river national park– afternoon birding along the forest road.

Subterranean River National Park is truly paradise. This amazing untouched forest next to the sea and its white beaches makes this a favourite destination for many birders, as it also holds most of the Palawan endemics. Within the Park we will be looking for the magnificent Palawan Peacock-Pheasant, Palawan Hornbill, Red-headed Flameback, Palawan Swiftlet, Blue Paradise Flycatcher, Yellow-throated Leafbird, Palawan Blue-Flycatcher, White-vented Shama, Palawan Bulbul, Ashy-fronted Bulbul, Sulphur-bellied Bulbul, Ashy-headed Babbler, the hard to find Falcated Wren-Babbler, Palawan Tit, Palawan Crow, Palawan Flowerpecker, Lovely Sunbird and Pale Spiderhunter. Plenty of other birds can be found within the Park and we will also be searching for some of these specialities along the forest  road back towards Puerto Princesa. Night walks will give us the chance to find Palawan Scops-owl and Palawan Frogmouth.

  • Day 22 Birding around Sabang Beach. Then back birding along the road towards Puerto Princesa – afternoon flight to Manila to connect with international flights or overnight stay in Manila and departure on day 23

Tour costs include

all accommodation throughout the duration of the tour including arrival & departure day; airport transfers on arrival & departure day, vehicle transport, 4 domestic flights; meals including two beverages for each meal (drinking water provided at all times) and snacks; guiding fees & entrance fees.

Tour cost exclude

international flights; departure tax, travel insurance; alcoholic drinks and any items for personal use.

For more information click on Information PageFor more information click on Information Page


Spotted Wood-kingfisher at La Mesa Eco Park 

 Blue-headed Fantail always seen in the mixed Bird flocks at Mt.Polis

Forest at Mt.Polis 

Flame-crowned Flowerpecker on of our target species at Mt.Polis

 Luzon Hawk-Eagle at Subic Bay 

 Philippine Eagle-owl at Angono Cave


 Ashy Thrush best chance to see it at La Mesa Eco Park

 White-browed Shama from Mt.Makiling can be seen also at Subic Bay

 Philippine Eagle in flight above the Eagle viewpoint at Mt.Kitanglad 

 Bukidnon Woodcock on the ground at Mt.Kitanglad

 Forest view at Mt.Kitanglad home to the Philippine Eagle

 Celestial Monarch we make a good chance at P.I.C.O.P

 Giant Scops-owl at P.I.C.O.P also possible at Mt.Kitanglad

Writhed Hornbill one of the three Hornbill species that still can be seen at P.I.C.O.P

 Mantanani Scops-owl a near endemic seen at a small island near Puerto Princesa

 Plenty of stunning views on Palawan 

Pale Spiderhunter the best views at Sabang Beach Palawan

 Palawan Frogmouth this one is from Puerto Princesa


Palawan Scops-owl a tricky species mostly seen near Sabang Beach


Red-headed Flameback from Balsahan Trail 



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